NOTE: A version of this article is now available for OS X Yosemite Time Machine vs. Intego Personal Backup X8. Please refer to this article instead:
Mac OS X 10.5 Leopard includes a feature called Time Machine, which backs up files automatically to an external hard disk. While this feature is interesting, it is very limited compared with Intego Personal Backup X5. The following is a comparison of the two backup tools, showing why Intego Personal Backup X5 is as important as ever, in spite of Apple’s including its own backup solution in Leopard.
- Personal Backup works on Mac OS X Tiger and Leopard (10.4 or later). Time Machine runs only on Mac OS X 10.5 Leopard.
- Personal Backup works on Mac computers with a PowerPC G3 processor. Time Machine only runs on Leopard-compatible Macs, which have G4 processors at 867 MHz or faster.
- Personal Backup enables you to back up your files onto a CD or DVD, to a network volume, or to any kind of removable storage device, such as a USB key drive or an iPod. Personal Backup can also back files up to a .Mac iDisk. With Time Machine, you can only back up to a hard drive or a network volume. Your Time Machine hard drive or volume needs to be connected permanently for your backups to be done.
- Personal Backup gives you flexibility as to which files you want to back up and when you want the backup to be performed. It can even backup the result of a Spotlight query. Time Machine backs up almost every file and does this hourly. If you're working on big documents, such as videos or HD photos, the hourly backup may affect the performance of your Mac and could quickly fill up your backup disk.
- Personal Backup enables you to create bootable clones of your startup disks or partitions. Time Machine does not allow you to start up your Mac from the backup disk.
- Personal Backup lets each user on the Mac define their own backup scripts. While one user may want to backup their music library, another user may not want to back it up as it contains only podcasts. With Personal Backup, everyone can be different. Time Machine backs up all user accounts, and all the files they contain.
- Personal Backup lets you define a different backup disk for each backup script. This is practical if you need to backup large files from multiple locations. With Time Machine, you can only use one backup disk at a time.
- Personal Backup lets you choose which types of files you want to back up. You can choose to exclude certain files by type, name, extension, path, size, etc. Time Machine backs up all files, and offers limited choice of exclusions: you can exclude specific files and folders, but only by choosing each one individually.
- Personal Backup enables you to synchronize two Macs. If you have a desktop Mac and a laptop, Personal Backup's synchronization features ensure that each computer has the latest versions of all documents. Time Machine offers no synchronization function.
- Personal Backup keeps the latest version, or a predefined number of versions, of each file in the backup destination. Time Machine keeps a long history of files and will fill a backup disk more quickly
- Personal Backup does not require a fast graphic card to restore backups. Time Machine’s restoration interface is graphic-intensive, and may not be ideal on older Macs.